Your friendly neighborhood strip club, it's safe to say, is no fan of the $5-per-patron "pole tax" the Texas legislature saw fit to levy in 2007. Its displeasure has been expressed in two ways: by refusing to pay (the tax has so far raised less than a third of the projected $44 million, prompting Co ... More >>
There have been two significant developments since the Texas Supreme Court ruled Friday that the state doesn't have to say where it got the pentobarbital it will use to kill death row inmates Tommy Lynn Sells and Ramiro Hernandez-Llanas. One is that the state of Texas, which had been rather vague ... More >>
The last time the Texas Department of Criminal Justice secured a cache of pentobarbital, the drug it uses to execute prisoners, the Houston-area compounding pharmacy that supplied it had second thoughts. "[I]t was my belief that this information would be kept on the 'down low,' and that it was unli ... More >>
Pretend that a corporation from China wants to build a factory in Texas just for the fun of it and needs to seize a bunch of Texans' private property to build the factory, because it's going to be really big and awesome. Do you think the Texas Supreme Court would stand for that? Probably not. And ... More >>
On Thursday, the Texas Supreme Court will thrust itself into a debate as old as the Internet: Is the web a place where ideas and opinions, often vile, sometimes damaging, should be allowed to flow unencumbered? Or should there be some means of identifying defamatory speech and purging it from the In ... More >>
There's something fundamentally troubling about seeing a judge on the campaign trail. Take Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett, for no other reason than that he has waded into the debate. He knows the system and has successfully held onto his place on the state's highest bench. Voters, assuming ... More >>
Ronald Thompson is not a particularly sympathetic defendant. Authorities say the 50-year-old visited Sea World in July 2011 to surreptitiously photograph young children. When police arrested him and seized his camera, they found 73 pictures of children in swimsuits, almost all of the images centered ... More >>
The legal fight aimed at halting the advance of the Keystone pipeline through Texas was cut off at the knees on Tuesday. A state appeals court in Texarkana threw out Lamar County landowner Julia Trigg Crawford's lawsuit against TransCanada, rejecting arguments that Keystone can't condemn land becaus ... More >>
Jeffrey and Henry Buck were married in Massachusetts on September 22, 2006, some two years after the state recognized same-sex unions. They moved to Texas in 2008 and quickly discovered what heterosexual couples have known for ages about the sanctity of matrimony: Sometimes it just doesn't work out. ... More >>
You'd think in this state, property rights would be the inviolable bedrock around which damn near everything else revolves. You'd think eminent domain, the taking of private property for public use, would be invoked only when the common benefit of a railroad, a highway or a pipeline is so undeniable ... More >>
Three years ago, Jeremy and Kathryn Medlen's dog, Avery, escaped from their Fort Worth home during a thunderstorm. They learned a few days later from Fort Worth Animal Control that Avery had been found safe and was in the custody of the city shelter. But by the time the family arrived to claim their ... More >>
A family of Johnson County landowners is suing Chesapeake, the country's second-largest natural gas company, for allegedly cheating them out of royalties. Their lawyer, Dallas-based attorney James Holmes, says they can thank endlessly indulgent Texas laws and a taxing authority more inclined to look ... More >>
Billy Frederick Allen served 26 years in prison for two drug-related murders in University Park. In February 2009, the Court of Criminal Appeals in Austin freed him, citing ineffective lawyering and "newly discovered evidence" that gave them "no confidence in the outcome of the trial." In March 201 ... More >>
For folks in the sandy hills northwest of Dallas, it's a devil's bargain for gas, water and jobs.
In the spirit of this week's cover on the exoneree compensation scheme and the attorneys who've profited handsomely from it, we submit the case of Billy Frederick Allen -- a man incarcerated for nearly 26 years for two apparently drug-related University Park murders. In February 2009, the Cou ... More >>
Behind closed doors this afternoon, the back-to-work Dallas City Council will be briefed by city attorneys on a handful of lawsuits, all of which we're quite familiar with: City of Dallas v. Museum of the American Railroad (which, last we looked, is close to being settled); Marcus Wood, et al. v. ... More >>
Nine justices deliver three written opinions over one torn-down Dallas house.As we were heading out the door Friday, the Supreme Court of Texas handed down opinions in two local cases, one of which we've written about before but neither of which is the "billion-dollar case" still awaiting a resul ... More >>
Speaking of the Supremes ...In January 2010 we listened in as the Supreme Court of Texas heard oral arguments in the case of City of Dallas. v. VSC, LLC, which is now close to a decade old. To sum up: In '02, tow company VSC was in possession of 326 the Dallas Police Department said had been "rep ... More >>
Dawn Rizos: "I think they're saying we exploit women somehow." Around lunchtime yesterday, Dawn Rizos was walking through The Lodge, the Spangler Road strip club she owns, when her adult daughter handed her a freshly printed-out copy of this Texas Tribune story. Supporters of the so-called "Pole ... More >>
Attorney Pete Schulte and the petitioner still known as J.B. on The Daily Show last yearSurely you recall the case of J.B. and H.B., two Dallas men who went to Massachusetts to marry in 2006, only to separate two years later and then try to get a divorce. In October 2009, Judge Tena Callahan gav ... More >>
Andy SiegelA Friend of Unfair Park was saying only yesterday he hadn't heard much in recent weeks about the upcoming vote to get Dallas wet from folks for or against the off-premise sale of beer and wine citywide. Which reminded me: Whatever happened to election foe Andy Siegel's plan to take his ... More >>
Flickr user: Robert HruzekWhen I called earlier this afternoon, no one in the City Attorney's Office had yet seen the freshly minted copy of Judge Elizabeth Lang-Miers's opinion in which the 5th District Court of Appeals tossed out attorney Andy Siegel's writ of mandamus filed on July 2. So, at t ... More >>
Harvey Birdman's more of an attorney than Hao Liu.Hao Liu is not an attorney. He's never been an attorney, nor a member of the State Bar of Texas. He's also not in law school. Never has been to law school. Hard to say what he does -- except, that is, tie up Dallas courts with frivolous lawsuits.U ... More >>
Patrick MichelsDallas City Attorney Tom PerkinsYesterday, you'll recall, those firefighters, police officers and assorted other first responders filed four amended lawsuits related to the 1979 referendum that gave 'em all pay raises (for how long's the billion-dollar question). We're still waitin ... More >>
Joe Betzel, one of the Dallas Fire-Rescue workers who filed suit against the city -- yet again -- todayBack in December we wrote a few items about the so-called "billion-dollar case" currently being considered by the Supreme Court of Texas. Very long story way too short: It stems from a 1979 refe ... More >>
Bob PerryNow this is breaking news. By now, surely you know the story of Bob and Jane Cull, which has been around for a decade -- when the twosome sued Perry Homes, claiming their house in Mansfield went to hell shortly after they bought it for $233,730 in 1996. At almost every turn, folks found ... More >>
Last spring, The Lodge made a big show of presenting the state with a big check that's been sitting in escrow ever since.As you no doubt recall, the state of Texas has been trying for years to find a way to make its so-called "pole tax" stick. The first time around, a judge slapped down the $5-pe ... More >>
While we await the Supreme Court of Texas's ruling in the city's so-called billion-dollar case later this year, let's consider another city of Dallas case going before the court at 9 a.m. sharp tomorrow: City of Dallas. v. VSC, LLC. The court will hear oral arguments in the years-old suit that ha ... More >>
I went over to the Dallas Public Libraries' Texas/Dallas History & Archives Division Web site in search of something entirely unrelated to this post. (Hint: It has to do with this photo taken by our pal Justin Terveen.) There, I noticed that the department was still in the process of updating ... More >>
No doubt you'll hear plenty more about the city's billion-dollar lawsuit between now and the spring or summer of 2010, when the Supreme Court of Texas rules on whether the city is immune from rescue workers' claims stemming from a 1979 referendum concerning pay raises and two subsequent lawsuits ... More >>
We kicked off yesterday by previewing Dallas's "billion-dollar" case before the Supreme Court of Texas: City of Dallas v . Kenneth Albert, a 13-year-old consolidated suit involving hundreds of firefighters demanding thousands in back pay. The city says it's immune from being sued; the attorneys o ... More >>
Exactly 30 years ago last January, Dallas voters passed a measure that gave a 15 percent pay raise to police officers, fire fighters and rescue workers; included in the ordinance was a caveat that there would remain in place a "pay differential between the grades in the sworn ranks." Which was fi ... More >>
Texas leading workers comp insurer says we dont need courts and juries watching over them. Yeah, right.
The Yearning for Zion Ranch just outside Eldorado This just in: Texas Supreme Court has ruled that the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services had no right to take the children from the mothers in the Yearning for Zion Ranch in Eldorado. In its ruling today, the justices wrote that the "r ... More >>
NEWSCOM Women from the FLDS sect entering a courthouse in San Angelo earlier this week. In Texas they go in with guns, seize evidence and ask questions later. In Utah, they go in with the accountants. That’s one way to describe the two very different approaches Utah and Texas have taken to deal ... More >>
Church of Buzzery preaches, "Trust no one."
We're 2-0 in the courts
Texas Supreme Court sides with satire and the Dallas Observer
Arlington says Hooters threatens its moral fabric. Wait, what year is this again?
Another Bad Apple, Don't Believe the Hoax, Save the Forest
Dallas lawyer Bryan Garner cuts through the muck of legal prose
Eyes wide shut; Vigilante justice; Long live the queen; And more
Fearless reformer or legal terrorist? Bobby Wightman-Cervantes makes a run for the Senate. The Texas Bar says he should have his head examined.
A conservative court and a hardball corporation have gutted plaintiffs' claims in the Kaufman County pipeline explosion case
Lawyer Fred Baron says he's one of the good guys, fighting a war against evil asbestos manufacturers. But some former employees claim his firm is a factory that mass-produces lawsuits by implanting memories and inventing testimony.
NAFTA road warriors fight it out for federal funding